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C.J. Stroud: I don’t want to go to the Bears; that’s Justin Fields’ team

Mike Florio and Myles Simmons discuss Calijah Kancey's impressive 40-yard dash time of 4.67 at the 2023 Scouting Combine and the Aaron Donald comparisons he is receiving.

C.J. Stroud could be the No. 1 overall selection, but if he is, the Ohio State quarterback hopes it’s not the Bears that draft him.

The Bears have Justin Fields, the 11th overall choice in 2021. Fields was the starting quarterback at Ohio State in 2019 and 2020, with Stroud serving as his backup in 2020.

“I mean, nah, I don’t want to go there,” Stroud said Friday. “That’s his team. I can do my thing. I can go build my legacy. He texted me yesterday morning. Me and him are brothers for life.”

Bears General Manager Ryan Poles said earlier this week “the plan right now” is to stick with Fields, but the team is doing its due diligence on the top quarterback prospects.

The Bears would trade Fields if they decided to draft Stroud, and Stroud is a believer that Chicago already has a franchise quarterback.

Fields became the third quarterback in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards, gaining 1,143 yards on the ground with eight touchdowns. But he passed for only 2,242 yards with 17 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

“I was proud of him,” Stroud said. “There’s so many times when you get knocked down, but I feel like a true man’s character is when you get knocked down, you get up. And he’s got up every time, and he’s stepped up to the plate, and he hasn’t blamed anybody; he hasn’t pointed no fingers; and he hasn’t done anything. As a human, that just shows you what type of man he is and what type of family he comes from.

“It’s hard, man. You get hit so many times hard in the face. You have to make plays using your feet, and he ain’t no damn running back. He’s a quarterback. He can sling that rock. I’m going to stand up for my brother every time, and he’s going to do great things in his career, and I’m excited to play with him [in the NFL].”